As our chaotic world spins madly on, creating a harmonious and peaceful environment by using the magic of nature is a philosophy we can all get behind.
Calming the mind and rejuvenating the soul, the individually handcrafted botanical smudge sticks from Elementals Botanica aim to bring a deeper sense of purpose and wellbeing. Smudging itself is an ancient technique of burning herbs that has been used by various cultures for centuries. More recently the antibacterial properties of medicinal smoke have been studied, with research finding that the smoke produced from burning medicinal herbs has been shown to reduce airborne bacteria in confined spaces by 94%. We caught up with Suze Campbell, the founder of Elementals Botanica, to hear more about the ancient technique and the passion behind her beautiful botanical brand.
What inspired you to start your brand?
Working as an intuitive healer and meditation practitioner, I recognised a demand and need for the products that I used during the sessions with my clients. After having my fourth child, I decided to take a break to be home with my youngest, however, I still wanted to be able to provide a form of healing to others. It was through this that Elementals Botanica was created.
I am extremely passionate about helping people and nature, so to be able to combine the two using my creative and intuitive abilities is an absolute blessing. I wanted to be able to offer authentic products that were of high quality, as well as being easy to use and effective.
It is still quite a new practice for many so I would love to be able to reach and educate as many people as I can about the amazing benefits especially in regard to anxiety and stress, which seems to be on the rise globally.
It’s also about empowering people to be able to take responsibility for how they may be feeling and providing them with the tools to create positive change in their lives. I believe my products have that ability.
Can you explain a little about what smudging is and the history of the practice?
Smudging is the ancient spiritual ritual of burning herbs to remove any negative energy from a space, person or object, replacing it with a higher frequency vibration.
Although it has only become a westernised practice over the last few decades or so, the sacred ritual of smudging has been practised for thousands of years in indigenous cultures around the world — it is one of the oldest methods of spiritual cleansing. It is considered a very powerful and sacred practice that dissipates negative energies.
It is extremely beneficial to use when moving into a new home, after a break-up or argument, when you may be feeling low or unmotivated or ill. On an energetic level, it is quite calming and soothing. For someone who hasn’t tried smudging, the difference can definitely be felt within: it’ll cleanse and calm the emotions as well as uplift you.
Our connection to nature, and its healing properties, is a very important part of our emotional and physical wellbeing and to have access to its vastness is pretty special. I’m very grateful to be learning something about it everyday.
How do you do it?
We begin by preparing the smudge stick and removing any crystals or dried flowers you may not want to burn. After taking a few deep breaths, you then set an intention in your mind of what you would like this smudging to do — whether that be to cleanse negative energy or emotions etc.
Then you light the top end of the smudge stick. After gently blowing out the flame to cause the stick to smoke, you slowly start waving the smudge stick around in gentle circular motions. If you are cleansing your home, open the windows and pay extra attention to the corners of a room, holding the intention in your mind as you move around the home. Hold a fire-proof bowl or shell under the stick as you are moving around, to catch any falling embers.
If you are smudging your body, this is best done with your shoes off to make sure you smoke the soles of your feet. If you are smudging crystals, ensure the smoke goes around the entire stone, including the bottom. Once you have finished, put out the stick in sand or leave it in a fire-proof bowl for it to go out on its own.
Where do you source your ingredients from — is ethical or sustainable sourcing important to you?
The bulk of my ingredients are grown locally in Victoria, with the remainder sourced from other parts within Australia. These are family-run businesses, who take great pride in running ethically and as sustainably as possible, where the entire process is done by hand right through to harvesting. This is really important to me, as well as being able to support other local businesses, especially through these unprecedented times.
When creating my smudge sticks, a lot of it is intuitive, so when I go to the flower farm, I use a combination of my intuition and knowledge of the medicinal properties of flowers and herbs. I will then sometimes incorporate certain crystals that will complement or enhance that particular energy. For example, with my best-selling Love Smudge Stick, I use a combination of white sage which cleanses the energy; lavender which invites love and brings peace and harmony; and roses to promote self love. I also attach a rose quartz crystal, which is known as the stone of unconditional love, both healing the heart and attracting love.
How are you inspired by nature?
Nature has a cure for every ailment. Something everyone will understand is the healing effects of a walk in a forest or along a beach… although it’s quite subtle, those activities have an enormous effect on our wellbeing. I think that in itself is quite amazing. Our connection to nature, and its healing properties, is a very important part of our emotional and physical wellbeing and to have access to its vastness is pretty special. I’m very grateful to be learning something about it everyday.